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New Guide: Protecting Communities After Disasters

New Guide: Protecting Communities After Disasters

It came to national attention following hurricanes Rita and Katrina: Relief and recovery after a natural disaster can serve as a prime opportunity for worker exploitation and abuse.

A new manual, " Guide to Rebuilding ," by AFL-CIO Community Services, the AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Department and United Way Worldwide, offers guidance and best practices on ensuring that when disaster strikes, the rebuilding of our communities is done well and contributes to rebuilding the local economy by using local labor and skilled union workers. Check it out here .

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Mine Workers See Troubling Conditions in Colombian Coal Mines, Surrounding Communities

This is a cross-post from the AFL-CIO's Solidarity Center.

In Colombia’s coal mines, troubling health and safety risks combined with serious environmental and social justice issues create conditions reminiscent of mining in the early 20th century in the United States. The dangers mine workers—and local communities—face are real and frightening, say four mining safety and health experts from the Mine Workers (UMWA).

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On Supreme Court Steps, Mom Credits Affordable Care Act for Life-Saving Treatment

This morning before the U.S. Supreme Court began its second day of hearing arguments on the legal challenge from 26 Republican attorneys general to the Affordable Care Act, Spike Dolomite Ward said the health care reform law means she is now getting treatment for her stage 3 breast cancer.

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‘Brotherhood Outdoors’ Showcases Pipe Fitters’ Chicago Fishing Adventure

‘Brotherhood Outdoors’ Showcases Pipe Fitters’ Chicago Fishing Adventure

On this week’s episode of “Brotherhood Outdoors,” Dan McNally, Fred Popplewell and Kevin Crum, members of Plumbers and Pipe Fitters (UA) Local 597 in Chicago—and longtime fishing buddies—head out on a Lake Michigan trout and salmon fishing adventure with show host Tom Ackerman.

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A Fairer Playing Field for London 2012 Olympic Workers

The London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has agreed to get tougher with factories in China.

Pressure by unions, advocacy groups and workers themselves has resulted in new protections for workers making badges and mascots for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

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Miller Urges Justice Department Action on Conduct of NLRB’s Flynn

The findings by the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB's) inspector general that NLRB member Terence Flynn funneled confidential information to people engaged in attacking the NLRB, including a key adviser to Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, “should not go without further scrutiny,” says Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.) in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder.

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Commerce: China Illegally Subsidized Solar Exports to U.S.

TPM Livewire reports that its sources close to the case say the U.S. Department of Commerce has determined the Chinese government illegally subsidized solar exports to the United States. In response, Commerce will impose import duties on Chinese companies sending solar materials to this country.

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Georgia Politicians Steal a Page from the Wisconsin 2011 Playbook

Perhaps Georgia's House Industrial Relations Committee staged Monday's surprise vote on S.B. 469—the draconian bill that would infringe upon the rights of Georgians to speak out for economic justice or choose whether to support a union—as an apt welcome for Wisconsin's Gov. Scott Walker as he came to Atlanta for a Republican fundraiser.  

The Republican-led committee held the sudden vote on Monday morning with little notice, posting the hearing on the calendar less than an hour prior—and waiting until just 10 minutes beforehand to post a note on the hearing room door. Not surprisingly, the measure easily sailed out of the committee without any legislators present to represent Georgia's working families. The committee also voted to pass S.B. 447, which would gut unemployment insurance down to the fewest number of weeks in the country. 

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Basics Out of Reach on Minimum Wage Paycheck

Let’s say you’re earning the $7.25-an-hour minimum wage. How many hours would you have to work to equal what a year of college costs? How about a year of family health insurance premiums?

The Center for Economic and Policy Research has crunched the numbers and they’re not pretty.

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Supreme Court Begins Hearings on Republican Challenge to Affordable Care Act

As the U.S. Supreme Court heard the first of three days of arguments on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, supporters of the landmark health care reform law demonstrated outside the court's building in Washington, D.C., while about a dozen tea party opponents of the two-year-old act showed up.

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